Bridges to be redone at golf course

By: Kristyne E. Demske | St. Clair Shores Sentinel | Published November 1, 2013

ST. CLAIR SHORES — To make the game safer for golfers, the St. Clair Shores Golf Club will begin replacement of seven bridges over the next 12 months.

The current bridges — first built in the 1970s — have steel beams and wooden decking, both of which are deteriorating after the wood was last replaced in the mid-1990s. Two of the bridges, when there are high water levels, are underwater for two or three days at a time. Those two are the bridges in the worst condition, said Golf Course Superintendent Tim Dorner at the Oct. 21 City Council meeting.

“Structurally, (the bridges) are sound with the steel and cement, (but) the decks are in poor shape,” he said.

His memo to City Council spells out that there is significant rust on the steel beams, however, and that erosion is beginning to develop along the banks.

Dorner said he was able to secure a price that would be valid through the end of 2014 for replacement of the bridges, in the amount of $128,475. The work will be done over the course of two fiscal years, he said, and it will begin with the bridges that are in the worst shape.

“What I would be requesting (is) approval to move forward, knowing we’re going to do two bridges at first … (and) spread the project over 12-18 more months … only moving forward as money becomes available,” Dorner said.

The project will be paid for out of the Golf Course Capital Account. To fund the account, a $1 fee is assessed on every round played and is then used exclusively for improvements on the golf course.

“Every time we have any project,” Dorner said to City Council, “we’ll come before this body. This is not like a secret little fund we have.”

He said the fund has accumulated about $50,000 per calendar year of golf and is closely monitored.

The bridges were one of the top items mentioned when the fund was established, Councilwoman Candice Rusie said.

“This is the golfers paying for improvements on the course they (use),” she said.

The replacement bridges will have a concrete deck instead of a wooden one. The first bridges to be replaced are those near the eighth tee and the 11th green. The project was awarded to the low bidder, Grunwell-Cashero.

The motion approving the bid passed unanimously.